Air Conditioning Tips
As the mercury rises, so can the costs of keeping your home cool. And while news reports about high energy prices may have you in a sweat, Blanco Heating and Cooling has some tips to help you save money while keeping your home cool this summer.
- Set back your thermostat 2-3 degrees lower at night because your greatest heat loss occurs at night.
- Invest in a programmable thermostat. By doing so, you can program the thermostat to turn down your air conditioning/heat for you when you leave for work when no one is home and after you go to bed when everyone is asleep.
- Replace your filters every 30 days. If you have a permanent filter, clean it with a mild detergent, per manufacturer’s recommendations.
- Air conditioning manufacturers recommend having the equipment tuned-up regularly. These tune-ups pay for themselves when the technicians tweak the systems for peak performance. Maintenance is a great way for homeowners to have the piece of mind that their equipment has been taken care of and should be working at the efficiency levels they originally paid for.
- Seal and insulate leaky ducts, to ensure that the airflow distribution system serving your equipment is operating at peak efficiency.
- Prune back shrubs and remove debris, like grass and leaves, that may block your central AC compressor.
- The location of your air conditioner has a lot to do with how efficient it will be. If you have a choice, locate your units on the north, east or the best-shaded side of your home. If the unit is exposed to direct sunlight, it has to work much harder and use more energy to cool your home.
- On hot summer days, the temperature in your attic can reach 150 degrees. Improving the ventilation in your attic will lower the temperature of the entire house and make your air conditioner’s job a lot easier. Installing an attic fan that is controlled by a thermostat to exhaust the hot air can greatly improve the comfort of your home.
- Depending on the size of your home, you can save 3% on your cooling costs for every degree you raise your thermostat in the summer. Raising the thermostat from 73 to 78 degrees can mean savings of up to 15% in cooling costs.
- Fans can make your air conditioner’s job easier while saving you money. Pedestal and ceiling fans improve the air circulation in your home, allowing you to raise the air conditioner’s thermostat. In moderate heat, fans can sometimes completely replace air conditioners. Ceiling fans use only about one tenth the electricity of a typical home air conditioner, and therefore cost only one-tenth as much to operate.
- To stay most comfortable during the hottest hours of the day, do your cooking, laundry and bathing in the early morning or late evenings. These activities all increase the level of humidity in your home, making it less comfortable and forcing the air conditioner to work even harder. If other heat generating appliances, such as irons, ovens and blow dryers are used only in the early morning or late evening, your home will stay cooler.